Read This Week’s Passage: Daniel 1

Temperance Taboo

Temperance is a word that is almost frowned upon in the twenty-first century. Standards of diet in a religious context are viewed as legalistic. We live in a culture in Christianity where you can do anything you want with your body because, after all, “it’s my body.” In the Christian community, the idea that one is saved almost gives license to eat and drink any way that one wants to. Truth be told, the idea of temperance is viewed with raised eyebrows even in our community of faith. Yet should it be? Does temperance have a place in the Christian experience?

Contained within chapter 1 of Daniel is the theme of temperance. From our cultural perspective, beginning a prophetic book with the theme of temperance is a peculiar one. Yet in Daniel 1, temperance lays the groundwork for intellectual and spiritual understanding that is critical to the rest of the book of Daniel.